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Eating healthy is a given for those who are conscious of their health. However, stress can make you go astray with the wrong kind of food choice.
Stress always causes most people to eat a lot of sugary and high-calorie food often known as junk food like chips, cookies, mac and cheese, cake and even ice cream. These comfort food are unhealthy but you can always substitute them with healthy ones like dark chocolate, fruits, and vegetables.
Moreover, nowadays people order in and what most people do not know is that you can also order in healthy stress-relieving food, not only junk.
As much as it seems alien, you can actually find a good meal prep delivery company with a variety of healthy relaxing food products.
Therefore, do you want to relax and lift the load off physically and mentally? Here are seven food products you can prepare or order in for a better-relaxed day.
Salmon contains omega-3, which is good for influencing your mood and reducing anxiety levels. This is because omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that help in the fight against any negative effects of stress hormones within your body.
You can opt to eat salmon, sardines, anchovies or any other oily fish, twice a week. Besides, you should take note that you cannot get the same mood boost from the omega-3s, in soy, flax, and walnuts, as that one you will get from an oily fish like salmon.
2. Green Leafy Vegetables
There is nothing as healthy as vegetables. There are varied types you can indulge in when under stress and need to relax.
You can think in terms of broccoli rabe, Swiss chard, spinach, collard greens, kale as well as mustard greens. This is because they contain folate, which can help your body manufacture neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, which helps in mood regulation.
3. Dark Chocolate
There is nothing wrong with eating chocolate, so when you crave it when under stress just have some. However, you have to make sure that it is dark chocolate.
However, you still need to choose a chocolate with at least 70% cocoa if you want to relax after a stressful day.
Moreover, research has found out that dark chocolate can reduce different kinds of stress hormones including cortisol.
Besides, its antioxidants can help lower blood pressure and improve circulation within your body, by relaxing the walls of your blood vessels.
Nonetheless, you still need to mind your portions with dark chocolate, since it is known to be a high-calorie food.
Oatmeal is one of the best foods to eat while stressed. It can help you relax, physically and mentally. Generally, it is a warm and comforting food that can help your brain generate the relaxing neurotransmitter serotonin.
Research has also found out that carb-eaters are often calmer than those who shun it. The carb shunners are often more stressed.
However, you should take note that any carb will not do. This is because refined carbs like pasta and white bread tend to digest faster thus spiking blood sugar. This can mess with your moods and leave you in a stressful situation.
Nonetheless, complex carbs like oats digest slowly and do not spike blood sugar, thus making them very relaxing to eat under any stressful situation.
Milk is healthy and one of the best stress-relieving food. You can take a warm cup just before bed to help you relax and sleep well. Besides, it is high on vitamin D, a nutrient associated with happiness.
In relation, the tradition of drinking it just before bed comes from a scientific research that found out that it helps with the release of tryptophan, which helps in the reduction of stress levels.
Turkey is not only a festive meal but also a great meal for staying happy and relaxed. It contains significant amounts of L-tryptophan, an amino acid that your body needs in order to convert it into serotonin. Serotonin often plays a huge part in mood regulation.
You should take note that L-tryptophan is often found in most foods that contain protein, but turkey has loads of it and that is why it is a top choice here.
Tea is also a great de-stressing food. It can keep you relaxed for a while when under stress or pressure. Besides, research has found out that tea drinkers de-stress faster than those who do not drink tea. They also have lower cortisol levels.
However, for better results always stick to herbal teas and decaf as caffeinated tea can rev the stress response. Some great choices for herbal tea are peppermint, ginger, and chamomile, as they can soothe your digestive tract while helping you to relax by calming the nervous system in your stomach.
In conclusion, do not stress about food choices. Just do the research on the healthiest ones to eat when under pressure or when stressed. This way you manage to relax while maintaining a healthy body, physically and mentally. For now, you can start with the one listed above.